A decent ‘all-rounder’.
Posted by Big John on July 19, 2007
The place is the beach at Margate, the year is 1925, the two overdressed young men are my father (left) and his mate Bert, and they have stopped to have their photograph taken in the middle of a game of cricket.
Unlike me, my dad was a great sports fan and long before the days of television he attended many great sporting events. He was a big boxing fan and supported Crystal Palace football (soccer) club, but his favourite sport was always cricket.
My father never tried to turn me into a sportsman, although he did take me, on a number of occasions, to the terraces at Selhurst Park and to The Oval to see Surrey play. Once he even took me to see the Oxford and Cambridge boat race, but I’m sure he never expected me to become a ‘varsity’ oarsman.
Before I was born my dad was a keen cricketer and when I was old enough to use it, he gave me his treasured ‘Jack Hobbs’ bat. One look at it’s battered and bruised appearance and it was obvious that it had seen plenty of ‘action’ on many village greens; but it never suffered further damage in my hands, as I decided that cricket was not for me, when one day in the school practice nets, the impact of a hard red leather sphere left me writhing on the ground in agony, clutching a most sensitive area of my anatomy and wondering if I would ever have children.
When I look at the photograph of my father (seated left) …
… and his fellow cricketers in their ‘whites’, I often wonder what he would have made of today’s ‘pajama’ clad players and their antics both on and off the field. I can’t imagine him saying … “It’s just not cricket old boy!” … like some pompous M.C.C. retired colonel in ‘The Long Room’ at ‘Lord’s'…. In fact I think that he would be ‘glued’ to his television …
… once he had tuned it to black and white.
I do understand that the references to the game of cricket will not mean very much to American fans of the game of baseball. However, I should point out that the cricket ‘WORLD CUP’ is competed for by teams from around ’THE WORLD’ ….
… Think about it !